Results of 2023: Bitcoin and altcoins make X's

When almost all cryptocurrencies sank in price in 2022, only the desperate or the smartest could have imagined that 2023 would be a successful year. Let's look at the key events in the crypto industry over the past twelve months.

January

The first month of 2023 meant the end of the crypto winter (although this could be said with caution then). The market digested the collapse of the FTX exchange, and cryptocurrencies rushed upward, slowing down only at the beginning of February.

In January, Bitcoin gained about 40%: from $16,500 to $23,100, Ethereum rose more than 32%: from $1,195 to $1,585, Solana grew by 140%: from $9.95 to almost $24, Cardano price soared by 60% : from $0.25 to $0.39, and Avalanche by more than 90%: from $10.83 to $19.8.

February

At the very beginning of February, the US Federal Reserve raised its key rate for the first time in 2023: by 25 basis points, from the range of 4.25%-4.5% to 4.5%-4.75%. As a result of such actions, cryptocurrencies lost their bullish momentum and began to decline.

Also in February, the first and only failure in the Solana network occurred in 2023. This was a great achievement for the platform, since in previous years its work was interrupted much more often. For example, in 2022, 14 failures were recorded, of which nine occurred in January.

March

At the beginning of March, the crypto industry was struck by a number of news related to banks. One after another, credit institutions began to crumble. It seemed like houses of cards. The American Silvergate Bank was the first to announce its cessation of operations on March 8. The next victim was Silicon Valley Bank (SVB), which managed over $200 billion in assets. Signature Bank was the last to go bankrupt. But the actions of the American and Swiss authorities stopped the crisis.

Cryptocurrencies reacted quite positively. Just by mid-March, the correction, which lasted a month and a half, ended. Bitcoin at one point fell even below $20,000. However, everything ended on a positive note: BTC almost reached $28,500 by the end of March.

April

The main event of April was the update of Ethereum Shanghai. It made it possible to unlock coins to remove them from staking. It was expected that after Shanghai, the ETH rate might collapse due to the influx of a large number of new coins.

However, in practice everything turned out a little differently. By April 16, ether rose to $2,140.8 (Shanghai happened on the night of April 13). Only after this did the correction begin. Nevertheless, it is hardly necessary to say that it arose because of Shanghai.

May

In May, crypto investors monitored the situation with the US debt ceiling. Republicans feared that it would not be possible to reach an agreement with the White House and the Democrats, and that a default would occur. But everything was resolved successfully.

The month was also marked by a number of failures. It all started with the fact that on May 7 and 8, the withdrawal of BTC from the Binance exchange was stopped. And on May 11, there was a failure in the Ethereum network. For 25 minutes it was not possible to complete transactions, despite the fact that their offer was received.

June

In early June, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) took up arms against crypto exchanges. According to the regulator, Binance, Coinbase and Binance.US did not comply with the requirements of American law. In addition, the SEC cited several cryptocurrencies as securities in the lawsuits: BNB, BUSD, SOL, ADA, MATIC, FIL, ATOM, SAND, MANA, ALGO, AXS, COTICHZ, FLOW, ICP, NEAR, VGX, DASH and NEXO. That is, she called assets that cannot be traded without being a licensed broker.

Another regulator — the Federal Reserve — this time did not demonstrate the variability of monetary policy: the key rate remained in place — 5% -5.25%.

Well, by the end of the month, “ETF euphoria” began. Major financial market players have begun massive submission of applications for spot exchange-traded funds. Among them were BlackRock, ARK Invest, VanEck and others.. The trend that started in June continued until the end of the year. Applications to the American regulator were received not only for spot bitcoin ETFs, but also for ether and futures exchange-traded funds.

July

Mid-month, a long-running dispute between the SEC and Ripple over whether XRP is a security was resolved.. The regulator lost, but the company won. The excitement of investors knew no bounds: on July 13, the XRP rate grew by 73%, and at the moment it even added a cosmic 100%. In addition, in July the coin reached fourth place in capitalization among all cryptocurrencies.

Also this month, the Fed raised the rate to its highest levels in the last 22 years, to 5.25%-5.5%.. The value remains unchanged until the end of 2023. A distinctive feature of the rate increase was the almost complete lack of reaction from investors. Since the increase was expected.

August

Now everyone is waiting for the spring halving of critical gold — Bitcoin. And in August 2023, the reward for mining crypto-silver was reduced — Litecoin. Project creator Charlie Lee, traders Bluntz and Peter Brandt believed that this should push cryptocurrency quotes above $110.

In fact, Litecoin was trading at almost $115. However, this was back in July. After the halving, the price fell to $57.4. Now, on the last day of the year, it is $71.83, which is 35% lower than expert forecasts.

And back in August, Grayscale won in a US court against the SEC. The Securities and Exchange Commission's actions in preventing the GBTC trust from being converted into ETFs were called capricious and high-handed. The court ruled to overturn the SEC's decision and consider Grayscale's application.

September

At the very end of September, it was announced that the Binance cryptocurrency exchange would leave Russia. However, the platform did not intend to close its business completely. Binance sold assets to CommEX, which is registered in the Seychelles, but is suspected of having ties to Kazakh businesses.

At the same time, the amount of cryptocurrency on all exchanges in September suddenly turned out to be very small, and investors noticed this. Volatility has become extremely low. The Fed thought and thought, and left the key rate unchanged at 5.25%-5.5%, without ruling out a further increase, which did not add any positive to investors.

October

In October, it became known that the SEC was not going to appeal the decision regarding Grayscale in court. The incident was completely resolved. Such news became a catalyst for the growth of quotations, which stopped only in early November.

In October, Bitcoin was able to finally gain a foothold above the $30,000 mark, simultaneously rewriting the annual maximum. The best looking was Solana, which in this month alone increased in value by 80%, to $38.51.

November

From November 9 to November 17, the SEC could approve the first spot crypto ETFs. But that did not happen. And the new deadline for when a decision could be made was scheduled for early January 2024.

But the biggest news of the month was the exodus of Chanpeng Zhao from Binance. The general director did not do this on his own initiative. The US Department of Justice charged the crypto exchange with violating anti-money laundering (AML) rules. As a result, Zhao left his post, agreeing to pay a fine of $50 million. His brainchild had to formally leave the American market and pay several billion dollars.

December

If in July the fourth place in terms of capitalization was occupied by XRP, then in December its position was taken by Solana. In December alone, the coin gained more than 90%, and since the beginning of 2023, the growth has been almost 900%. XRP ended up in sixth place, behind BNB in fifth place.

Interestingly, over the last month of the year there has been an increase in activity regarding cryptocurrencies among political leaders in Latin America. El Salvador has decided to simplify the issuance of citizenship for those who are ready to invest in the country’s economy using bitcoins and USDT. And in Argentina, the new authorities allowed the conclusion of financial contracts in cryptocurrencies. The newly elected populist president Miley Javier (a supporter of the Austrian economic school) proposed adopting a law that would make the circulation of cryptocurrencies legal for citizens of the country.

And most importantly, December was marked by the annual maximum rate of the first cryptocurrency — at its peak, BTC reached $44,700.

We draw a conclusion

To summarize, it can be noted: over the past year, BTC has grown from minimum to maximum values by more than 2.7 times (from $16,471 to $44,729). ETH also showed positive dynamics, with growth almost doubling: from annual lows of $1,191 to $2,447. A number of altcoins also showed positive dynamics, following BTC. Some countries are moving towards legalizing the circulation of cryptocurrencies, and although the number of such cases is not so large yet, the number of such initiatives has at least begun to increase.

At the same time, in the “traditional financial sector of the economy” not everything is so certain: rising inflation, problems of banks, the US Federal Reserve’s fight against inflation. All this against the backdrop of tougher rhetoric from financial regulators like the SEC. But all this did not lead to a fall in the BTC rate in annual terms. It can be stated: in 2023, after a long period of crypto winter, a growing trend in the crypto market emerged in relation to many assets, including Bitcoin.